RUNAWAY

At fifty-six, I finally did it, I ran away from home. 

Two weeks ago my mom was in top form, I hadn’t been feeling well and she just wouldn’t let up, for everything I would say she had an answer, something had to give and it was me. All morning tit for tat, then finally the last straw; 

“Mom, we need to air out your room today.”
“The air in my room is fine, keep the window closed.”
“Mom lets open the window half way and turn the fan on for thirty minutes while you’re in the den, then we’ll close up shop again.”
“Let’s keep the window closed, why do you want to air out my room?”
“Mom, your Depends smell strong, you’re not drinking enough fluids, and I don’t want the odor throughout the house.”
“My Depends don’t stink.”
“Yeah, mom they do.”
“I don’t smell them.”
“That’s because you’re used to the smell, you don’t even notice it anymore.”
“I notice you stink, maybe that’s what you smell.”
“Mom, I don’t stink.”
“Yes, you do it’s not my Depends your smelling, its you, you stink.”
“Mom, I don’t stink.”
“Yes you do.”
“No I don’t.” 

Both of us couldn’t stop, we were like two three year olds back and forth. Finally; 

“Fine, I’ll air your room out from my stink.” 

Did, it end, no not really her mouth kept going, I had a headache and fever, I asked her to leave me alone but she knew I was down and she couldn’t or wouldn’t stop. 

I grabbed some clothes and left. 

Well, no one went to her rescue. Dana had her hands full with Mac who the doctors said probably had H1N1. 

My uncle was fed up, Moo is in Europe. 

So, there she was home alone. She called everyone she could think of to spend the night, only no one came, everyone is tired of her games. The next day, I dropped in to check on her using an excuse that I needed some clothes; 

“Mom, I’m only here to pick up some things. It looks like you did alright being by yourself.”
“What’s the difference, I’m always by myself, you’re never here.”
“Mom, that’s not true, and you know it.”
“I know I don’t need you.”
“Fine, I’ll get some clothes, and leave.”
“Good.” 

So I left, and she was in for another night alone. The third day, I took in some groceries and left food. In three days, she had only eaten cereal, peaches, ice cream, three bottles of water and two Ensures. I brought to her attention there was chicken, coleslaw, lasagna, macaroni, salad, vegetables and fruit. She pointed out, she had eyes. So I left.

 After the forth night, It became apparent, she didn’t care one way or another if I came back, she was no longer afraid of being alone. I on the other hand was having trouble, how long before something happened. So back I went. 

When I told her I was back, I could tell she was happy, but she said she didn’t need me she had eaten and taken care of herself, she told me all the things she cooked and ate. I guess in her mind she had eaten, nothing was touched. 

Then it happened again, she started in on me, finally I said; 

“Mom, it started out that I wanted to keep you in your own home, keep everything the way you like it, but I can’t, I’m losing my mind. Instead of me taking care of you out of love because you’re my mom, I feel obligated, there is no one else. 
“Don’t feel obligated; I’m not your mother.”  

What the hell, now I know how Luke Skywalker felt, when Darth Vader told him he was his father. What a jolt, she’s not my mother? I had mixed emotions, I had questions but was to dumb founded at the time to say anything. Until the next day; 

“What should I call you?”
“What are you talking about?”
“Well, you told me you’re not my mom, so what should I call you, Eva?”
“I never said I wasn’t your mother.”
“Yes, you did and you know you did.”
“Well, I was mad and wanted to hurt you, you know I’m your mom.” 

Yes life is just like the movies, just like Luke, my parent is from the dark side trying to pull me in.

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8 Responses to “RUNAWAY”


  1. 1 Barbara November 1, 2009 at 10:11 am

    Yikes! Oh, Nancy, this doesn’t sound fun at all! You must be an exhausted, strung-out mess by now! How do you stand it? I’m sorry, but I’d be ready to put her in a home by now!
    I’ve been with my Mom for 3 months now and I’m already getting agitated with her even though she’s trying to comply with what needs done.
    She’s starting to be repetitious and we have pretty much the same conversations every day!
    I can’t wait until tomorrow–Mom has a glaucoma check up and Sis is taking her so I can stay here alone–peace and quiet–and a short breather! YAY!! Kinda of like a mini running-away-from-home!

    • 2 Nancy November 3, 2009 at 6:56 pm

      Wait until you have the same conversations every hour, I realize it’s the dementia, so on most days I get through, it’s the total meanness that I can’t handle.

  2. 3 GAIL November 3, 2009 at 8:37 am

    NANCY….I UNDERSTAND YOUR RUNNING AWAY…IN A WAY I DID THAT EVERY WEEKEND WHEN I VISITED MY PARENTS IN NEEDLES…THE LONG 31/2 HOUR RIDE RUN WAS VERY CALMING….WHAT HAPPENED TO YOUR P T CRUISER….I HAVEN’T SEEN IT IN DAYS…..ARE YOU DOING YOUR GOERGEOUS CHRISTMAS TREES THIS YEAR??????I’M TRYING TO PLAN THANKSGIVING FOR MY FAMILY HERE THIS YEAR…WE’LL SEE WHO WILL BE HERE OR HOW EXPENSIVE IT WILL BE….KEEP WRITING YOUR COLUMN…IT’S REALLY GOOD…..GAIL

    • 4 Nancy November 3, 2009 at 7:14 pm

      Gail, you were such a good daughter going to Needles every weekend if it was me going to visit my mom I would have missed the turnoff and gone to Laughlin.
      The day I ran away my radiator broke, so it’s been parked at my house where it will sit until Paul has the time to fix it.
      As far as Christmas goes, I probably will put up five trees again at mom’s, that’s all I can fit in the house, I would like to put more because it drives mom nuts.
      Thanksgiving, you’ll do fine, do the turkey and the stuffing and let the girls do the rest. Just be sure to tell us when dinner is ready.

  3. 5 GAIL November 4, 2009 at 7:12 am

    i miss seeing your car,,,,the dinner (thanksgiving) is still up in the air and if it does happen i’ll buy it all from whole foods…the last time i tried to cook here i set off the fire alarm and took out the battery…that was 5 years ago….i can’t wait to see your trees again….

    • 6 Nancy November 6, 2009 at 12:27 pm

      Gail, I’m shocked, I was under the impression you liked to cook, maybe Whole Foods is a good idea, or better yet have your two beautiful girls do all the cooking.

      I wish I could buy our Thanksgiving feast. For the last twenty-five years I do it all, with the exception of dessert which is Dana’s department. People think I’m strange for having three rotisseries but I could do one twenty-two pound and two sixteen pound turkeys at the same time, and have my oven free for all the side dishes. This year it would be nice to have someone else cook, we’ll see.

  4. 7 Jennifer November 4, 2009 at 9:48 am

    Are you guys kidding me? Gail doesn’t cook. I want to see your trees to. When Gails comes over call me so i can see to. I am ready to call Honey Baked Ham store NOW!! I know better than doing it all myself. I love the Holidays because you can call to have someone eles cook. lol..Glad you are back to writting we all missed you. Good luck at home. Get your car fixed a.s.a.p so you can escape soon. Jennifer

    • 8 Nancy November 6, 2009 at 12:44 pm

      Jennifer, I’m still laughing I thought Gail cooked, but I’ll be honest there has been some holidays, where I’ll get a Honey Baked Ham, either for the main course or as an alternate main dish, but I still have to do the side dishes. I think one holiday soon, I’ll go on strike.


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